Which are SA’s most popular used hatchbacks?

Hatchbacks are the most sold used cars in South Africa; this body type is even more popular than the perennially popular sports utility vehicle (SUV). But which are the most popular used hatches in South Africa?

According to George Mienie, CEO of AutoTrader, the Volkswagen Polo is the most popular used hatch by far. “It is the most sold hatchback and  also the most searched for hatch in the land. So, when it comes to the Polo, there is direct parity between consumer interest and spend,” he notes.

Mienie has based his findings on AutoTrader search and sales data pertaining to the 2019 calendar year. The website is the biggest automotive digital marketplace in the country (over 4,2 million searches for hatches specifically were conducted via AutoTrader in 2019 alone). Accordingly, AutoTrader data provides fascinating insight into consumer buying patterns and likes.

According to Mienie, the dominance of the Polo in the used market may well surprise some industry observers. “After all, it’s not the best-selling new passenger car in South Africa. That honour goes to yet another vehicle from the Volkswagen stable, namely the Polo Vivo, which was the best-selling passenger car in South Africa with 29 619 vehicles sold last year,” he reveals.

But the Vivo isn’t missing from the list of most popular hatches; it was the second most sold and the third most searched for hatch during 2019.

Rather interestingly, yet another Volkswagen product rounds off the top three. “The Golf was the third most sold and most searched for used hatch in South Africa in 2019. The fact that all three of the top hatches hail from the Volkswagen stable is testament to the power and popularity of the Volkswagen brand,” Mienie comments. 

“2019 was an incredible year for Volkswagen South Africa (VWSA). Not only did the Uitenhage factory produce a record 161 954 vehicles, surpassing the previous record of 137 758 vehicles produced in 2011, VWSA also ended the year with 23.4 percent passenger market share (up 0.6 percent from 2018), meaning that close to a quarter of all cars sold in the South African market are from the Volkswagen Group,” says Mike Glendinning, Director: Sales and Marketing, VWSA.

Three other vehicles feature on both lists, proving their popularity amongst motorists who are browsing for a vehicle and also those who are actually ready to purchase one. “The Ford Fiesta was the fourth most sold hatch in 2019 and the seventh most searched for. The BMW 1 Series was the sixth most sold and the fourth most searched for. And the Toyota Yaris was the 10th most sold and also the 10th most searched for hatch in 2019,” concludes Mienie.

Most searched and sold used hatches in South Africa in 2019*

Rank Most searched Most Sold

1 Volkswagen Polo Volkswagen Polo

2 Volkswagen Golf Volkswagen Polo Vivo

3 Volkswagen Polo Vivo Volkswagen Golf

4 BMW 1 Series Ford Fiesta

5 Kia Rio Hyundai i20

6 Ford Focus BMW 1 Series

7 Ford Fiesta Toyota Etios

8 Mercedes-Benz A-Class Ford Figo

9 Audi A3 Kia Picanto

10 Toyota Yaris Toyota Yaris

*Source: AutoTrader

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